Retirees don't bother making a will - they'd rather spend it all

Pensioners too busy buying holidays and technology to leave cash to their offspring

Spending the kids' inheritance

One in ten retirees don't plan to make a will, with one in nine of them saying that they'd rather spend the cash themselves before they die. The older they get, the more they are splashing out, refusing to budget, and committing to just enjoying the cash. Is this fair on their family?

See also: Should you give away your inheritance before you die?

See also: Retirees plan to splash cash on holidays and hobbies

See also: Gordon Ramsay will not leave his fortune to his kids


A study by Norton Finance found that only 5% of older people are interested in saving whatever they can to pass on after their death. The rest were too busy spending their cash: nearly a third have three or more holidays a year, and half of them spend more than £2,000 on each break.

More than half of them had bought a tablet (they are more likely to own a tablet than students are), two thirds had splashed out on a laptop, a third had a smart TV, and one in ten had at least one games console.
Retirees spend almost £250 million a month on eating out, and one in nine spend more than £50 a month on their grandchildren.

Some, however, aren't spending all their cash as part of a masterplan to spend their kids' inheritance. A third admitted that they often failed to keep track of what they were spending, and one in ten didn't bother budgeting at all. Paul Stringer from Norton Finance said: "We're finding that the older people get, the less budget-focused they become. There are a number of reasons for this, such as potentially not having to support a family and receiving benefits from the government."

Is this fair?

It follows on from a study last year by Gransnet that revealed that one in six 50-70-year-olds plan to spend all their cash before they die. They worked hard all their careers, and intend to enjoy the retirement they have earned for themselves.

Arguably there's no reason why they should have to scrimp and save for the sake of the next generation - who have their own opportunity to save for retirement and shouldn't be relying on an inheritance to make ends meet.

However, there are those who argue that each subsequent generation is facing a bigger financial mountain to climb. The offspring of retirees face vastly-inflated house prices and the demise of final salary pensions, while their children are starting their adult life with the millstone of student debt, and are likely to receive the bare minimum in terms of pensions from their employers or the government.

While there's no legal imperative forcing retires to pass on some of their wealth - either during their lifetime or after their death - there's an argument that they might want to - to ensure their offspring can achieve the same standard of living as they have, despite the bigger financial challenges that they face.

But what do you think? Should retirees be allowed to spend their own money without criticism, or do they owe a moral duty to their children? Let us know in the comments.

How we spend our pensions

How we spend our pensions